‘The pandemic highlighted how many elderly people suffer from ‘loneliness-virus’’

    Festa dei Nonni had already been celebrated in Italy as an official holiday for 16 years. Then last January, Pope Francis launched World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly, proposing. Felini Foundation’s Charles Lansdorp helped connect the two.

    Lansdorp, the founder of Festa dei Nonni, received a message from a contact person in the beginning of this year. Informing him of the fact that the Vatican was planning to celebrate the first World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly on the 25th of July. The news came as a surprise to Lansdorp because the official Grandparents’ Day is celebrated on the 2nd of October, the Day of the Archangels, in Italy.

    “I was worried initially, that this new holiday would confuse people in Italy. I thought it was essential to create a connection with Festa dei Nonni in October” says Lansdorp. In other words, ‘if you can’t beat the Pope, join him’. And a connection between World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly and Festa dei Nonni isn’t too far-fetched after all.

    Lansdorp: “It was an opportunity to start with a campaign against loneliness in the summer – feelings of loneliness can become stronger during the summer for elderly people – and end the campaign with Festa dei Nonni in October.” (..)

    Click here to read the full interview in Floribusiness magazine.

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